BIJOU-REVIEW: Kernel Season’s – Kettle Corn Crunchin’ Kernels

Rating: ©©©-1/4 chips  (notable)

Kernel Season's - Kettle Corn Crunchin' KernelsFirst, there was Gladcorn.  The original corn trail blazer!

Next, came Pop’d Kerns with “a corn crunch like no other!”

Heck, even Trader Joe’s tried their hand at a couple of ‘Partially Popped Popcorns’.

And now, Kernel Season’s Crunchin’ Kernels are joining the “half-popped popcorn” club!

For more on Kernel Season’s Crunchin’ Kernels see our review for their Original Corn Flavor.

Usually we are a sucker for any type of sweet & salty Kettle Corn product, but for one reason or another Kernel Season’s offering does not really suit our fancy.

Both the sweet & salty are there, but when combined with the half-popped kernels, there are just no fireworks.

Maybe it has to do with the fact that with this flavor, more than any of Kernel Season’s others, the half-popped kernels far more broken down into tiny kernel bits.  In other words, a LOT more of those pesky – stuck in your gums – kernels.

As always, these are our thoughts, we would love to hear what you think.  Agree or disagree, let us know.

Crunchin’ Kernels provided to Chip Review by Kernel Season’s for review

Kernel Season’s Official Website

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REVIEW: Snyder’s of Hanover Sweet and Salty – S’mores Pretzel Pieces

Rating: ©©©©-1/2 chips  (lip-smacking)

Snyder's - S'mores PiecesShow of hands please – how many of you out there think that these new sweet & salty pretzel pieces sound good?  Or, even more importantly, how many of you out there actually believe that Snyder’s of Hanover could somehow make this pretzel-s’more combination taste delicious?  Crickets…crickets…..crickets…..

Yeah, well we can’t deny that we weren’t in the same exact boat until the first piece graced our lips and wowed our mouths!  In other words, we are beyond thrilled to inform you that Snyder’s of Hanover (SOH) has in fact somehow, some way, knocked these out of the pretzel pieces park!

To be completely honest, we couldn’t have stumbled upon SOH’s S’mores pretzel pieces at a more perfect time.  This review is coming off one of, if not, the worst SOH review (Zesty Ranch 50% Less Fat) of all-time.  Frankly, we sort of thought that Snyder’s of Hanover may have gone off the deep end and decided to pursue less fat, and poor tasting variations of their typically fantastic pretzel pieces.  Luckily SOH has pulled a complete 180 and wowed us with these odd flavored pretzels – who’d a thunk it.

Snyder’s of Hanover is no stranger to the sweet and salty game.  In fact, this is the fourth flavor from their Sweet & Salty series of pretzel pieces that we have reviewed, and we can say with certainty, that it is far and away the tastiest!

To say that these S’mores pretzel pieces really, really surprised us would be an understatement.  We’re going to tell you right off the bat that they do not necessarily taste like s’mores at all.  Nope, not at all.  So, if you are looking for some sort of truly authentic s’mores pretzel snack representation then look elsewhere.  However, if you are alright with eating some deliciously rich, sweet and salty, inauthentic s’mores flavored pretzel pieces then look no further!

What these pieces do taste like is a heavy dose of chocolaty-cocoa mingling with some rich pretzel pieces.  The marshmallow sugary-sweet aspect is pretty darn tasty.  While the experience of eating a campfire roasted marshmallow can obviously not be captured in a pretzel seasoning, we sort of do feel like we were tasting marshmallow mixed in among the chocolate.  But, two out of three main s’mores’ ingredients is all we get.  It’s very apparent that SOH has made no huge attempt at the inclusion of graham with these.  Sure, there is honey in the mix, but graham is a powerful, and very recognizable flavor – so, how the heck can you have s’mores without graham?!  In our books, you can not!  Maybe SOH was thinking that the pretzel pieces themselves were filling that void, but they just don’t quite do it for us.  Who knows, maybe if there had been some graham thrown in this flavor equation these pieces could have been “A” list perfect?!

All that being said, in the end, these are really delicious pretzel pieces.  If you like sweet and salty, and s’mores-y, than you most certainly will like these!

As always, these are our thoughts, we would love to hear what you think.  Agree or disagree, let us know.

Discovered at Jewel Osco; Westchester, Illinois

Snyder’s of Hanover Official Website

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REVIEW: Snyder’s of Hanover Sweet and Salty – Maple Bacon Pretzel Pieces

Rating: ©©©-1/2 chips  (notable)

Snyder's of Hanover Sweet & Salty - Maple BaconAll new Snyder’s of Hanover Pretzel Pieces alert!  Should we also mention Maple Bacon?!

If the sound of that doesn’t peak your interest, then we’re not sure if you are in the right place, nor if your taste buds are actually working!  May we suggest you have those checked out right away!!

As many of you are probably already aware Snyder’s of Hanover (SOH), are (in our humble opinion) the “classic masters of hard sour dough pretzel snacks”.  We have touted their pretzel making merits countless times around these parts.  That being said, we’ve reviewed both the Salted Caramel and Cinnamon Sugar flavors from SOH’s newer-ish ‘Sweet and Salty’ line, and in our humble opinion they have not been quite as successful as their traditional Pretzel Pieces line.  If we had a choice of sticking with one or the other, we would be choosing their ‘salty and savory’ traditional line of Pretzel Pieces every time!

For those of you somehow still unfamiliar with SOHs Pretzel Pieces, let us explain to you our optimistically proposed beliefs regarding the creation of these deliciously crunchy pretzel pieces.  In a perfect world, SOH would resourcefully use their leftover pretzel pieces, broken during the manufacturing process, to creatively provide us with these tasty bites (unlikely, we know)!  The most ingenious part of the “broken” pretzel pieces, is that they generously expose their very porous, bread-y insides, and willfully absorb a more than ample amount of whatever flavoring SOH is applying.

Everyone seems to love the sound of bacon flavored snacks (most likely due to the fact that real bacon is awesome!!).  However, we have noticed over our many years of reviewing bacon flavored crunchy snacks that the majority of them are actually not really good.  All too often the bacon flavored snack has been coated with such an obscene amount of salt, along with an off-putting unnatural smoke layer, that we are repulsed from the get go.  Of course there are some really great bacon snacks out there, but the key seems to be that they either use real pork, or combine a subtle bacon flavor, with a really great complimentary flavor, ie. sour cream, or cheddar.  From what we have tried thus far, that complimentary flavor does not seem to be MAPLE!

Luckily for all of us, SOH’s Maple Bacon Pretzel Pieces are the best of any maple bacon flavored snacks that we have reviewed thus far, but given its competition, that really isn’t saying very much!  In fact, and in all honesty, SOH’s maple bacon seasoning is straddling a very fine line between tasty and completely off-putting.  One step in either direction and you could have yourself a delicious snack, or a quick gag reflex!  Which way you step depends upon whether you find the smoky bacon, sweet maple and bread-y pretzel combo to really meld together, or you find it to be just too much.  Same with the other two Sweet and Salty flavors we could have used a bit more salt; but we did really appreciate all of the smoky and savory notes.  In the end, if there is one thing that can be said about the maple bacon seasoning it is that it is not subtle.  In fact, we could not eat too many of them in one sitting, and would suggest that they be enjoyed in moderation – for fear of crossing that fine line in the wrong direction!

As always, these are our thoughts, we would love to hear what you think.  Agree or disagree, let us know.

Discovered at Jewel Osco; Westmont, Illinois

Snyder’s of Hanover Official Website

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REVIEW: Snyder’s of Hanover Sweet and Salty – Cinnamon Sugar Pretzel Pieces

Rating: ©©©-3/4 chips  (notable)

Snyder's of Hanover Sweet and Salty - Cinnamon SugarAll new Snyder’s of Hanover Pretzel Pieces alert! 

If the sound of that doesn’t peak your interest, than we’re not sure if you are in the right place, nor if your taste buds are actually working!  May we suggest you have those checked out right away!!

As many of you are probably already aware Snyder’s of Hanover (SOH), are (in our humble opinion) the “classic masters of hard sour dough pretzel snacks”.  We have touted their pretzel making merits countless times around these parts.  That being said, although being a little better than the other Salted Caramel flavor, for the most part we’re not huge fans of SOH’s ‘Sweet and Salty’ line of pretzel pieces.  We’re just going to stick with their ‘salty and savory’ line of tried and true pretzel pieces!

For those of you somehow still unfamiliar with Snyder’s of Hanover’s pretzel pieces, let us explain to you our hypothetical scenario beliefs regarding these deliciously crunchy pretzel pieces.  In a perfect world, SOH would resourcefully use their leftover, broken during the manufacturing process, pretzel pieces to creatively provide us with these tasty bites (unlikely, we know)!  The most ingenious part of the “broken” pretzel pieces, is that they generously expose their very porous, bread-y insides, and willfully absorb an often more than ample amount of whatever flavoring SOH is applying.

Once again, as was the case with the other ‘Sweet and Salty’ flavor, we were wishing that there was even more salt.  More like ‘Sweet and sorta Salty’!  While salt was not necessarily nonexistent this time, it would have benefited tremendously from an extra dash, or two, or five of the world’s greatest mineral rock formation!  The finely ground cinnamon and sugar combination was abundantly coating every nook and cranny of the pretzel pieces.  The flavors melded well, and while it the pieces weren’t necessarily overly sweet, they just would have profited from the salt cutting though some of the monotonous cinnamon and sugar sweet tones.

All in all, these were certainly not bad, but we didn’t really love them.  This is one of those cases where we think SOH could really take some notes from Pretzel Crisps’ ultra successful Cinnamon Toast flavor, and made sure to still include enough salt to juxtapose the sweetness.  Maybe we should set these out amongst another salty snack to help balance each other out.  Or, MAYBE Snyder’s of Hanover should do another Flavor Doubles with Cinnamon Sugar, and one of their deliciously salty-savory flavors?  How does Cinnamon Sugar and Buffalo Wing sound….huh?!?  You heard it here first!

As always, these are our thoughts, we would love to hear what you think.  Agree or disagree, let us know.

Discovered at Hy-Vee; Madison, Wisconsin

Snyder’s of Hanover Official Website

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REVIEW: Snyder’s of Hanover Sweet and Salty – Salted Caramel Pretzel Pieces

Rating: ©©©-1/4 chips  (notable)

Snyder's of Hanover Sweet and Salty Salted Caramel

Comments:

All new Snyder’s of Hanover Pretzel Pieces alert! 

If the sound of that doesn’t catch your attention, we’re not sure if you are in the right place, nor if anything would!!

As many of you are probably already aware Snyder’s of Hanover (SOH), are (in our humble opinion) the “classic masters of hard sour dough pretzel snacks”.  We have touted their pretzel making merits countless times around these parts.  But, as you may have already noticed by our mid-range ‘notable’ rating above, these pieces are no where near their best!

For those of you still unfamiliar with Snyder’s of Hanover’s pretzel pieces (you should be ashamed), and those of you who have not already read any of our previous pretzel piece reviews, let us explain to you our perfect scenario beliefs regarding the deliciously crunchy pretzel pieces.  In a perfect world (the one in our heads), SOH would resourcefully use their leftover, broken during the manufacturing process, pretzel pieces to creatively provide us with these tasty bites (unlikely, we know)!  Due to the structure of these “broken” pretzel pieces, they generously expose their very porous, bread-y insides and willfully absorb an ample amount of whatever flavoring SOH is applying.  Typically, we praise SOH for this ingenious technique, however this time we find ourselves wondering if the salted caramel flavor wouldn’t work better as a dusting, on a hard outer pretzel shell?

Overall, the salted caramel flavor was hit and miss with most of the reviewers.  Virtually everyone most certainly agreed that the caramel aspect/flavor half was very present, really accurately represented, and definitely overpowering.  The sweet, rich and buttery notes of a good caramel struck every cord.  On the flip side, the other half of the equation – SALT – was practically nonexistent.  In fact, please don’t tell anyone this, but some of our reviewers may have even salted a few pieces!

All in all, these had potential, and were certainly not bad, but we didn’t love them.  Maybe they would be a good snack to set out amongst other salty snacks to help balance one another.  Or, MAYBE Snyder’s of Hanover should do another Flavor Doubles with Salted Caramel, and one of their deliciously salty flavors?  How does Salted Caramel and Buttermilk Ranch sound….huh?!?

As always, these are our thoughts, we would love to hear what you think.  Agree or disagree, let us know.

Discovered at Hy-Vee; Madison, Wisconsin

Snyder’s of Hanover Official Website

Chip Ratings Scale:

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